N.Y. Times Profiles Person with FTD in Article about Living with Dementia
An article published by The New York Times on October 5 highlights the ways in which persons diagnosed with dementia continue to live active lives following diagnosis. It chronicles the steps taken by Laurie Scherrer, a 60-year-old Pennsylvania woman with FTD and early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, to ensure that she can live life to the fullest.
Laurie received her diagnosis at the age of 55. A sales executive by trade, she began struggling with simple math and found she couldn’t remember the names of her clients. Her FTD journey began with “a self-inflicted pity party,” but she quickly seized on the opportunity to craft a meaningful next chapter for herself and her family.
In order to feel secure about the future, Laurie drew up legal documents allowing her husband and other family members to make medical and financial decisions on her behalf, should she become unable to advocate for herself. She educated herself about dementia through support groups, virtual memory cafes and Dementia Mentors, an international online community for persons diagnosed. She also keeps a blog, Dementia Daze, to chronicle her experience and serve as a guide to others in similar situations.
Laurie remains active five years after her diagnosis, balancing dementia advocacy with her passions for cooking and gardening. Her upcoming plans include a scuba diving trip to South America and an RV vacation across New England. As long as she is able, she plans to “live a meaningful, happy life.”
For more information about legal and financial planning after an FTD diagnosis, visit AFTD’s website.